Photo Credits: Green Car Reports, mbusa.com
Luxury Drive With An Extra E
2018 Mercedes-Benz C-Class
Base MSRP: From $47,900
Tax Credit: Up to $3,501
Battery Size: 6.2 kWh
EPA Range: 20 electric miles, 375 total miles
Charging Acceptance Rate: 3.3kW
Performance: Plug-in Hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV); four-cylinder gas engine, combines with 87 horsepower electric motor for 275 horsepower
Mileage estimate: 51 mpge
Price estimate: From $47,900
Warranty: 4 years / 50,000 miles
Powertrain Warranty: 4 years / 50,000 miles
Roadside Assistance: 4 years / 50,000 miles
PHEV Battery Warranty: 6 years / 62,000 miles (Extended up to 10 years / 150,000 miles in some select states)
2018 Mercedes-Benz C350e Plug-in Hybrid Review
After announcing its commitment to produce electric vehicles (EV) more than two years ago, Mercedes-Benz appears to be sticking to the plan.
The introduction of the 2018 Mercedes C350e plug-in hybrid (PHEV) gives the esteemed German automaker two EV vehicles. Mercedes is halfway to its goal of producing four electric models by the end of 2020. The effort is Mercedes’ bow to the popularity of EV cars and also an opportunity to benefit from the German government’s policy to provide sales subsidies for all EV vehicles priced less than $67,150.
Mercedes entered the EV market in 2014, unveiling the B250e, a four-door hatchback with seating for five passengers. It was the only B-Class vehicle that Mercedes offered to U.S. car buyers. The B-Class is one of the company’s entry-level vehicles in Europe.
In the EV world, the Mercedes C350e is not exactly being lauded because its range is a mere 20 miles. There are other fine qualities to this compact luxury sedan that can accommodate five passengers, but its EV range is certainly not one of them.
One feature that C350e owners will likely enjoy is the ability to choose among the four hybrid-related driving modes.
- E-mode: All-electric driving
- Hybrid: Gas with boosts of electric power, resulting in great efficiency
- E-save: Relies on the gas engine with little or no help from the electric motor, while also reserving energy in the battery
- Charge: Although the combustion engine is operating, some of the fuel is consumed to pump energy in the battery pack
Like most Mercedes vehicles, the C350e has an attractive exterior. It possesses the elegant, sophisticated styling that often characterizes the Mercedes brand. The C350e has a long hood, rather short rear deck, and is a handsome sedan. There’s virtually no difference between the EV model and the standard C-Class vehicle.
The C350e interior has an attractive layout with an array of upscale features that one anticipates with a luxury brand, including driver memory and a high-tech dashboard with a 7-inch touchscreen. Front seats provide ample head and leg room, while the rear seats are comfortable even for larger people. Trunk space is modest at 11.8 cubic feet, nearly a foot less than the normal C-model due to the battery pack.
The plug-in C-Class features a liquid-cooled, 220-pound battery pack (located under the rear axle) with a total capacity of 6.2 kilowatt-hours. It takes about two hours to recharge (through a port on the rear bumper) with a 240-volt outlet. The vehicle is energy efficient, getting 51 mpge while operating solely on electricity, and 30 mpg combined as a hybrid after its battery has been depleted.
Anticipate the typical excellent Mercedes driving experience from the C350e. It gives the driver a sharp feel for the road and cruises along smoothly with almost no noise. It weighs 4,250 pounds, approximately 600 pounds more than the standard four-cylinder E300.
Vehicle Power and Speed
The C350e is no slouch when it comes to performance. It features a 1.9-liter, four-cylinder gas engine that combines with an 87-horsepower electric motor to generate 275 horsepower and 443 pound-feet of torque. This combination can get you there in a hurry, evidenced by its 0-60 mph time of approximately 5.8 seconds. It reportedly can reach a top speed of 155 mph.
We love that Mercedes-Benz has made a commitment to manufacturing EV vehicles. There are many things to applaud with the C350e. However, a 20-mile EV range will likely not be a huge selling point for many car shoppers.
Media Video Review: Mercedes-Benz GLC 350e Road Test
Recommended Charging Stations = LCS-20
Recommended Power Level of Charging Station = 16A
Vehicle Acceptance Rate: 3.3kW
EV Charging Resources
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Manufacturer Details by mbusa.com
2018 Mercedes-Benz C350e: plug-in hybrid luxury sedan driven by Green Car Reports
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